We are right in the middle of Breastfeeding Awareness Week. So, to show my support and to help bring awareness, I’ve decided to post this entry on both this and my A Little Bit of Us blog.
Not breastfeeding wasn’t ever even an option for me. I never had to make the decision because it’s just what everyone does, right?
I went into nursing Abby misinformed and underinformed. Nursing started off really well but by about 2 1/2 months I was having trouble with supply. So by three months, I quit and started her on formula. Never thought much of it until I got pregnant again and decided that this around I was going to be much more educated on pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding.
I’m certain now that I could have continued nursing Abby if I would have been more knowledgeable. I am currently studying for both my doula and breastfeeding counsellor certificates, as many of you know. I am so convinced now that about 99.9% of women out there CAN breastfeed, even if they’ve been told they can’t, think they have supply issues or something physical holding them from nursing their babes. I’m reading a book for my course called Breastfeeding Made Simple and it’s absolutely fantastic. My mind is bursting with new information, pounding with tidbits I can’t wait to share with others and I am learning that so much of what I thought was true is actually a myth. I recommend this book to anyone and everyone who is nursing and/or planning to nurse. It’s one of those books that I think should be required reading for expectant moms. Read it. I love what I’m learning and wish I would have known a bit more when I had Abby so I could have continued on with this healthy habit for both her and I. I thought I was pretty informed about breastfeeding but I can now say I’m stunned at what I DIDN’T know.
Among the things I’m learning is just how vitally important breastfeeding is for babies’ health, how formula will never come close to the perfection that is breastmilk and how so many women are misinformed, even by their well-meaning doctors. I really don’t like to shove information at people or throw my opinions down people’s throats but there is just so much wonderful information in this book that I just want everyone to know.
I expected nursing Josie to be simple. I enjoyed nursing and I had been there, done that. um… no. Unlike with Abby, we got off to a rocky start. Things were going so rough for the first two weeks that I would dread the moment when Josie started showing signs of hunger. I experienced much discomfort that led to nipple distortion, bleeding, bruising and engorgement. Thankfully!! I have a friend, Amy, who is a La Leche League leader and I called her to come over to save my weary, tired, post partum soul. She saved me. I am so grateful for how she helped me. She came over, watched me painfully nurse Josie and within 5 minutes, had Josie nursing PAIN FREE. Pain free! I suffered for two or three weeks and all it took was a phone call and five minutes and it was over. Turned out Josie just had a shallow latch. Amy sat and visited with me while Josie nursed and nursed and nursed. She drank all she could, rolled over and zonked out so hard, milk drunk. I never had trouble again. Oh wait, maybe I shouldn’t say that. Josie has two bottom teeth and this week has taken to trying them out on me. Awesome.
Anyway, to sum up I just wanted to say that if you need help or are experiencing any pain- GET HELP. It shouldn’t hurt and it should be peaceful and wonderful for you and your baby. If you don’t think you can breastfeed, think again. You most likely can. Call a La Leche League leader or a lactation consultant in you area. From what I understand, La Leche League leaders work voluntarily so this is a great option if you don’t have the money to pay someone to come out and help you. And before you start nursing, get informed, learn how to prevent problems and ask any and all questions you might have. That would have saved me the first time around.
Here are some website and contact info:
One of the best websites on breastfeeding, solving problems, etc.: http://www.kellymom.com/
La Leche League website, monthly meeting info, help, contact info, etc.: http://www.llli.org/
Dr. Jack Newman, the superman of breastfeeding, including videos: http://www.drjacknewman.com/
Breast really is best.